Prayer Q&A

Is God too busy to listen to “small” prayers?

No, not at all! “Big” prayers or “small,” God listens to them all! Sometimes we make the mistake of thinking about God the same way we do people. We don’t want to bother the people in our lives with the little things. But God will always be there for you when you turn to Him. He is never too busy and you are never a bother. He delights in spending time with you and loves you beyond words.

Why should I pray?

When you love someone you want to spend time talking to them. Prayer is talking to God and God talking to you. You can share your heart with God about anything through prayer. Prayer is the pathway a person takes to enter into God’s presence.

Are long prayers better than short prayers?

No, not at all. It’s your heart that matters! A short prayer from the heart means more than a long, rote prayer. Long prayers don’t impress God any more than short prayers do. Prayers prayed from the heart are the most pleasing to God regardless of the length.

Do I have to kneel when I pray?

No, you don’t. Some people kneel when they approach God out of reverence and humility, but you can sit, stand, lay down, or kneel. Jesus’ death on the cross made the way for us to approach God, not the position from which we pray. The most important thing is that we talk with God – regardless of our stance.

Does prayer actually accomplish anything?

Absolutely! First, when we talk to God we get closer in our relationship with Him. Secondly, prayer is powerful! When our prayers go up, God’s power comes down. Because of Jesus, our prayers are not empty words that fall on deaf ears, but give us direct access to God.

Does God answer prayer right away?

God is perfect, everything He does is perfect, and His timing is perfect. Most of the time, His timing is different from ours. We are a microwave, drive through, and instant gratification generation; we want everything to happen right now, including answers to our prayers. But God knows the beginning from the end, and sees the big picture in all things – trust Him. When you have prayed and are in the waiting room of answered prayer, trust that God knows best, and has your absolute best interest at heart. Also trust Him when He says “no” or “not yet.” In hindsight, you will be so glad you did.

Is there a right and wrong way to pray?

Yes…and no. Yes, our prayers need to align with the principles in the Bible. That is one of the reasons it is oh so important to read your Bible everyday – so you can know what God’s will is and pray in accordance with His will. As long as our prayers agree with Scripture, no, there are no specific words or formulas we need to use.

Does it matter whom I pray to?

Yes, most definitely! The Bible tells us to pray to the Father in Jesus’ name. Praying to anyone else or by any other name is what the Bible calls idolatry – which simply means placing someone else next to, instead of, or above God. You can start your time of prayer by praying something like, “Heavenly Father” or “God,” and end your time of prayer by praying, “In Jesus’ name. Amen.”

Can I pray whenever I want to?

Yes. You can pray morning, noon or night, anytime of day, anywhere you are. God is always listening and cares about what concerns you. As a matter of fact, you can pray all day by having a running conversation with Him. He should be the first person we go to whether we have had something wonderful happen and when we have had something negative happen in our lives – and everything in between. He should be the first person you greet in the morning, “Good morning, Lord,” and the last person you speak to before you go to sleep at night, “Goodnight, Lord, I love you!” and everything in between.

What if I don’t feel like praying?

Let me ask you a question. What do you do if you don’t feel like talking to someone you love? You do it anyway. No communication = no relationship. We need to pray whether we feel like it or not, because we need to be intentional about our relationship with God. But once you start talking to God, you will desire to be in His presence all the time.

I want to have a prayer life but don’t know how to begin. What is the first step?

Start by entering into a relationship with God through His Son Jesus. Jesus is the only way to have a relationship with God. Jesus is the Way, the Truth, and the Life. Jesus shed His blood on the cross 2,000 years ago to give us the ability to have a relationship with God. With Jesus we can have a relationship with Almighty God. Without Jesus we are eternally separated from God. Ask Jesus to forgive you of your sins and for living life according to your plan (instead of God’s). Repent of your sins and trust in Jesus as Lord and Savior. Tell Jesus that from this point on you will follow Him until you take your last breath. Tell Jesus that you will live according to His plan, which is found in the Bible. Begin reading the Bible in the book of John. Read one chapter a day and then begin having a conversation with God about what is on your heart. And then ask God what is on His heart. In this way you will start a two-way conversation with God through prayer.